Monday, August 13, 2012

Going Batty at Barton Creek in Austin

Austin provides those of us living in Big D with the perfect weekend getaway. It’s a 3-hour drive straight down I-35 and offers great restaurants, amazing outdoor activities, a wide variety of live music clubs, funky boutiques and a heaping dose of Austin “weirdness” that is a nice change of pace from the fast-paced sophistication that is the norm in Dallas.  This past weekend I was invited down to experience some of the best things to do and chew that the city has to offer. My first stop was Barton Creek Resort & Spa.



Barton Creek is a fabulous hotel and like its name suggests, they specialize in a great golf experience and spa facilities.  But as the Mother of a tween, I am always on the lookout for cool places that offer a wide variety of activities that won't break the bank. On that note, Barton Creek more than delivers.  There are plenty of free family activities: The hotel has a beautifully pool landscaped with natural limestone waterfalls and fauna. Play water basketball or volleyball, enjoy a life-size game of chess or just lounge poolside and take in the sun. In the mood for a stroll? Take a hike on the Nature Trail which winds about ½ a mile around the property. Want something a bit more active? Check out some clubs and take on the Resort’s Miniature Golf Course for some good ‘ole fashioned family fun. Purchase a s’mores kit in the hotel coffee shop or pool cabana, then join the concierge on Friday and Saturdays from 5-6PM to make Summer’s yummiest outdoor dessert.  Whew! That enough for you? Well, there's MORE!

Want to stay inside where the temperature is bit cooler? Then check out the Summer Family Activity Room where you’ll find ping pong, Foosball and a wide variety of board games. Barton Creek also hosts Family Movies where you can cuddle up with the kids and enjoy family flicks in the Forum. Also available to guests of all ages is an 11,000 square foot fitness center that includes group classes, personal training, free weights, weight machines, punching bags, outdoor running and stretching areas and an indoor lap pool. 

We took advantage of Barton Creek's "Batty in Austin" package.  Every evening in August, hundreds of people gather at sunset to watch 1.5 million Mexican free-tailed bats emerge from under the Congress Avenue Bridge for their nightly feeding.

Not only did this package garner us a great spacious room and a breakfast buffet fit for a King. It also provided us with shuttle service to the Congress Street bridge for an easy in/easy out experience, a disposable camera (which the kids loved) and these AWESOME bat glasses that I am modeling in the photo to your left.

You could hear their high-pitched chatter as you walk up to the bridge. They are hungry and talking to each other about where to go and find some grub. We picked a grassy spot on the hill beneath the bridge and it wasn’t 10 minutes before they started to fly out. Much like moths around a flame, you can see them swarm out in large groups. It was a fun sight to see and something to check off the list.

The best thing about Barton Creek is that it provides you with a beautiful resort setting that is just minutes from all of the dining and entertainment options Austin provides. This gives you lots of choices about how to structure your weekend. Or not!

The resort features 312 spacious and beautifully appointed guest rooms, a newly renovated full-service Three Springs Spa and superior dining experiences in its Hill Country Dining Room and 8212 Wine Bar & Grill.  Located in the heart of Texas Hill Country, Austin's award-winning Barton Creek boasts four nationally acclaimed championship courses as well as the state's only Callaway Performance Center.  For more information on Barton Creek Resort & Spa, call 1-800-336-6158 or visit bartoncreek.com.

Thank you to Barton Creek Resort & Spa for hosting my visit. The product selections, descriptions, and opinions in this post are 100% my own. Interested in a sponsored post or product review? Contact me for rates and details.

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